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I hate group activities at work

This is a fairly common thing to hear in the therapy room (as is “I really don’t like working in a team” and “if I could do my job without having to interact with people all day, that would be amazing!”), and the reasons behind these feelings can be highly diverse. Perhaps you’re more of an introverted character and so feel shy, nervous or anxious in the company of new or existing groups. Perhaps you quickly feel like the target of other group members’ jokes or anger. Perhaps you find it difficult to get to know new people which is especially hard in a group environment. And so on.

The most effective way by far to work on your relationship with groups in general is to look at how you show up in them. This means getting to know yourself through a process of self-discovery, which can easily be done in a safe and supportive therapeutic environment. We would get to know you as an individual, and then look at what aspects of groups you find difficult – is it how they make you feel, your lack of participation (see ‘I want to have more of a voice at work’), particular characters in the group that ‘rub you up the wrong way’… etc.

We would also focus on what types of groups you find more difficult than others, and see what information we can find there too. Perhaps you find it harder to relate to your colleagues, but usually have a great relationship with your boss – or the opposite may apply... Maybe you find it much easier to work with men than women…

All of this insight would provide us a rough direction of how to move forward, and we would also look at where you want to end up. Perhaps you love the idea of being more active in a group but find this hard currently. Perhaps you are in a new position where you’re required to lead a team which doesn’t come naturally to you. The possibilities are endless. But keep in mind that so are the strategies for change. The only thing you need when you start on this journey is an open mind and a willingness to grow.

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